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Gales top 90mph as South West Wales storm clear-up begins

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: November 23, 2012

By richard youle

ICE-COLD: Visitor to The Mumbles Pier Cafe, Joe Owen, from Tycoch remains cool while braving the elements at Mumbles Point

ICE-COLD: Visitor to The Mumbles Pier Cafe, Joe Owen, from Tycoch remains cool while braving the elements at Mumbles Point

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BATTERED South West Wales was clearing up today after hurricane-force gusts and torrential rain lashed the region.

The southerly gales really got their act together after lunchtime, with an unofficial gust of 92mph recorded at Rhossili, Gower.

At around 2pm a decision was taken to close the Chiquito giant wheel at Swansea's Waterfront Winterland until conditions improved.

Trees tumbled and rivers rose as "an active cold front" dumped up to two inches of rain in some parts.

BBC Wales meteorologist Derek Brockway said yesterday: "A very active cold front is going to move through so that is going to bring some intense rain.

"We're looking at 20mm of rain, just under an inch, but one or two spots could get 40mm to 50mm. There are strong to severe gale force winds so that's going to cause problems for travelling. It is something to be concerned about."

Yesterday's storm sent pink recycling bags skittering across the streets of Sketty - and delayed the opening of Cardiff's Winter Wonderland where Only Boys Aloud were due to perform.

And it generated huge waves, which gave Worm's Head and other exposed areas a pounding.

Surf website A1 Surf forecast waves of 12.5ft at Langland and Llangennith.

National Coastwatch Institution volunteer John Kavanagh told BBC Wales that the sea at Worm's Head was "like a cauldron." He said: "We've got waves lashing over the Worm's Head, which I've never seen before."

Meanwhile, Environment Agency Wales and the Met Office has warned that Wales is at greater risk of flooding this winter. They said the third wettest summer since 1910 had left the ground saturated while rivers were high and aquifers full.

West and North Wales endured some of the worst conditions yesterday. The A55 was closed in both directions at Bangor. North Wales Police warned people not to travel "unless absolutely necessary".

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